What is a Psychometric test?

Psychometric tests are sophisticated tools designed to measure individual difference in a number of areas such as:

1. Intelligence/Ability – Learned and non learned and two types – verbal reasoning and numerical reasoning.

2. Personality
a) Measures an individual’s character trait
b) Predict how they might behave in certain circumstances
c) How he/she works
d) What type of work they will excel in
e) How they associate with their peers and manage their team

3. Motivation
a) Provide information about the type of environment, tasks, and activities that an individual will be motivated to do
b) Motivation matches individuals to roles that will not clash with their work attitudes
c) Motivation quickly addresses simple but very important issues such as:
How he/she likes to work?
What motivates him/her to work?
What types of goals/challenges does he/she like?

When used in combination with other information sources such as interviews, psychometric tests provide an insight into why people make the decisions they make, and why they behave in the way that they do. Psychometrics also help predict a person’s future behaviour and performance.

What does it entail?

A high number of candidates have no idea what ability and aptitude tests entail so don’t worry, you are not alone. There are many students and graduates in your boat but as the saying goes, practice makes perfect.

See below: Hints and Tips on Taking Online Tests

We would encourage you to read these tips since it is in your best interest that you achieve a high a score as possible. Most companies have cut off points – if you score below a certain level, you’re out of the recruitment process.

Competition for jobs is currently very fierce. Therefore, a high test score may increase your chances of being shortlisted (other things being considered).

Hints and Tips on Taking Online Psychometric Tests

You’re going for a job or being considered for promotion or management are introducing an initiative that hasn’t been explained to you. Change is stressful at the best of times…but then you’re asked to do a test as part of the process. Your stress levels rocket! You have nightmares about school and college examinations. How can you be sure you don’t mess up your answers?

Here are some simple tips to help you do your best at psychometric tests:

    • Read the instructions and the text at the start of any question very carefully. Most people make mistakes because they’ve misunderstood what they’re supposed to do, not because they cannot do it.
    • You should also be aware that you may be asked to sit another test at a later stage – especially if you are asked to take a psychometric test online at home, as part of the recruitment process. Don’t get someone else to do it for you – you may get found out later on when you complete the next ability test for the employer.
    • Some tests start with practice questions. Don’t worry if you get these wrong; they’re quite often designed to ensure you make silly mistakes before you get into the real test. Use them as a sort of athletic warm up exercise that helps you understand what you have to do and get in the mood to do your best.
    • Don’t spend too long on any one question. Some tests get harder as they go on, some easier, some ask questions randomly. So, you can always go back to questions that are holding you up.
    • Be careful how you confirm your answers and make sure you know how to move onto the next question and whether you can go back to previous questions.
    • Specific strategies may work well:
      • in multiple choice tests, rule out the obviously untrue answers and concentrate on those that are left.
      • spend a while at the beginning, looking at the amount of time you have and the number of questions you have to answer. Check as you go along.
      • BUT, if this sort of structured working is not natural to you, don’t force it. You’ll end up feeling unsure of yourself and won’t perform optimally.
      • If there’s time at the end, go back over your answers.
      • If anything disturbs you (noise from in or outside the room for instance) or something goes wrong, let the person supervising you know straight away.
      • Like athletes and actors, you’ll do your best if there’s some adrenalin in your system, so don’t worry about worrying. In fact, for ability tests, where there are right or wrong answers, be ‘up for it’ – ready to do your best. Remember, these sorts of tools are designed to help you display your best performance.
      • Some tests don’t have right and wrong answers; they’re more about describing yourself and the way you characteristically behave or think. Often they’ll give you a number of descriptions to chose between. Don’t get hung up on thoughts like ‘none of these are like me’. Understand what the instructions say – ‘Your first thought is often the best’ for instance – and follow them.
        • You need a real sense of openness and honesty for a personality questionnaire or survey whether this is feedback on a person’s performance, behaviour or on an event. If you distort the results or lie you may end up in the wrong job, out of your depth or having misrepresented a valued colleague. That’s not fun.
        • If you’re asked to answer a personality questionnaire or survey at home or at your desk: ensure that you have a quiet area or at least somewhere where you are able to consider your responses for surveys and can finish in one session.
        • Tiredness, alcohol and any excessive enjoyment the evening before can affect your ability to answer questions accurately. Leave the celebration for after you’ve been given the job!
        • Above all, keep reasonably calm (but not comatose) – and enjoy the experience and the feedback you’ll receive. The majority of people find they enjoy personality assessment; it helps them find out about themselves. To access free practice links to CEB-SHL Psychometric tests: Numerical, Verbal, and Abstract Reasoning tests, click HERE